With a career covering five decades it’s hard to distill the work of the man they called “The Sound” down into just over 60 minutes of music so I’ve taken a random dip in the back catalogue for a selection of the work of one of the greatest tenor players of jazz who is best known around the world as the saxophonist featured on one of the biggest-selling jazz singles of all time, the The Girl From Ipanema.
- Desifinado – Jazz Samba (1962) Classic Getz along with Charlie Byrd on guitar and a signature tune which topped the charts.
- O Grand Amor – Sweet Rain (1967) his first big album after he had concluded his bossa nova period, featuring a young group that propelled his playing to new heights. The band is pianist Chick Corea, bassist Ron Carter, and drummer Grady Tate all of who are well versed in rhythm-section freedom, and open things up for Getz to deliver some fascinating soul drenched solos.
- Exactly Like You – Diz and Getz (1955) Sparks fly as Dizzy’s be-bop chops meet Getz’s cool school approach.
- Three Little Words – Award Winner (1957) with his mid-’50s right-hand men pianist Lou Levy and bassist Leroy Vinnegar, plus drummer Stan Levey. A mixture of cool, swinging ballads, and simmering, low-key grooves. A break through album for Stan cementing his reputation as a great player.
- Night Rider – Focus (1961) Eddie Sauter tunes and arrangements with orchestral backing and Getz improvising over the top. A cinematic feel with stunning playing makes this arguably his finest moment.
- E Luxo So – Jazz Samba (1962) another track from this landmark release – the first full-fledged bossa nova album ever recorded by American jazz musicians.
- Samba De Uma Nota So – Big Band Bossa Nova (1962 ) Fresh from the sudden success of Jazz Samba and “Desafinado,” Getz asked Gary McFarland to arrange a bossa nova album for big band as a follow-up. Jim Hall on guitar and Hank Jones on piano are two of the stars on this release.
- All The Things You Are – The Song Is You (1969) a summertime 1969 concert festival performance from Italy featuring pianist Stanley Cowell, bassist Miroslav Vitous, and drummer Jack DeJohnette. Getz approaches the Hammerstein/Kern show tune with a lot of gusto and Jack’s free style on the drums makes this something a bit special.
- A Handful of Stars – West Coast Jazz (1955) Lou Levy (piano), Leroy Vinnegar (bass), Shelly Manne (drums), and Conte Candoli (trumpet) on an album punningly titled given the musicians were from the east coast.
- Apasionado – Apasionado (1990) some critics were a bit sniffy about this one – likening it to “elevator music” and describing Herb Alperts production as too rich. What shines through is – despite his advanced years Getz still had the power deliver “The Sound”.
- Night and Day – Stan Getz and Bill Evans (1973) The only studio meeting between Getz and Evans took place over two days in May 1964, with drummer Elvin Jones and either Richard Davis or Ron Carter on bass – Carter in this instance . Oddly Verve shelved the results for over a decade before issuing any of the music. Elvin is in his usual fiery form and delivers a brisk and muscular solo.
- Out of Nowhere – Imagination (2002) Drawing on Stan Getz’s work for the Roost and Prestige lables , this CD documents his early days as a quartet-leader, following his success with Woody Herman.